Hi Cathy. What a courageous admission!!! Some where in the past each and every experienced person who shares life with a companion bird has been guilty of unmeaning neglect. We have to change daily as new info is tested and applied to help us provide the best of care for our feathered friends.
My first experience with a bird was a male canary named Jimmy after my uncle who was away fighting for our safety as a country. I was quite young and so I assisted my mom with Jimmy's care. Jimmy ate egg biscut with vitamins and canary seed and gravel. His breeder gave him a drop of whiskey when he got a cold. Jimmy was with us for 8+ years. We did the best we knew for our Jimmy, but by today's standards it would be considered low quality care. We all have to start some where to learn about and care for the various small birds and animals available in pet stores or from breeders.
These companion birds and animals give each of us opportunities to bond with and learn to care for other animal species. We develop a sense of responsibility for care and we learn to bond with these little ones. I was blessed to have grandparents that cared for a variety of domestic and wild birds and animals. We had Daisymae the orphaned raccoon from an illegal hunter on my grandparents land. There were 2 kits that 2 volunteer families raised and released back to the wild.
There are millions of families facing the new experience of sheltering and caring for companion birds or small animals. In past times Many children grew up on farms and experienced the reality of raising domestic stock to feed humans. This is a hard one for me, but I remember Going with my grandfather down the road to another farm where my grandfather purchased eggs and a fat hen for sunday Dinner, my favorite Slippery dumplings and chicken. The chicken was prepared start to finish by my grandmother, who had a pair of pet bantum chickens that liked to ride around the property in her huge apron that she collected fruits and veggies in to prepare our meals. today we have a huge disconnect as all we have to do is buy prepackaged cuts of meat at the grocery store. Those who lived further from the farm could go to the local butcher shop and buy a cut of meat take it home and cut it into meal portions and freeze for later use if you were lucky enough to have a freezer. Other meat could be preserved in brine and smoked etc. We have come a long way today. Forty years ago in Embryology class in college we grew our own chick embryos in an incubator and day by day we learned to harvest and prepare each stage of the embryo to be fixed and viewed under a microscope. This was a great process because we actually learned to prepare our own class tools when finally the last 3 chicks hatched it was my job to feed and care for the chicks until they grew into big white hens. At the end of the semester they were given to a local farm. There again we experienced a connection between the origin us as students and the the chickens which eventually returned to a farm. A few years later I worked as a volunteer in a bird sanctuary. We received frozen new born male chicks that were rejected because they were not hens. These chicks became the food for injurred and handicaped Raptors that lived at the sanctuary. At that time there were 2 permanently injured bald eagles in residence. They were later placed in a zoo to hopefully produce chicks that could be set free to replaced wild eagles that died from DDT effecting the eggs. There were also Brown Pelicans with the same problems. The injured birds were kept in large fly away pens so that the young could grow up and fly back to replenish the wild population. Few people today are blessed with such hands on experience.
Many children raised in the big cities today are afraid of even the smallest bird or mouse or butterfly or grasshopper or praying mantis. there is an essential disconnect from the natural world. So bless you each one who comes to Talk Budgies to gain the knowledge needed to care for our companion animals. Talk Budgies is here to assist people seeking knowledge about how to properly care for our feathered friends that we have adopted from the wild and partially domesticated to become companion birds. Many times experienced Members feel great pain for the accidents that happen to
birds owned by inexperienced people. But this is why we volunteer here to help other people to be skilled bird keepers. So God Bless you Cathy and Budget for accepting the challenge and learning together to be friends.